Cassette Review: Wrist Like This - Self Titled

Review by Adam Wujtewicz

Wrist Like This! is probably one of the most schizophrenic sounding hardcore punk bands ever.  They are, in some ways, a perfect mix of all of the members other bands Todd Romanella (Estrogen & Tonic), Matt Potter (Fatal Film/Street People), Christian Moore (Estrogen & Tonic/A Honey Wagon), and Jay Curland (We Got Mouths /A Honey Wagon), only sped up and cranked.  In other ways they sound like a bunch of crazy people thrown into a room with instruments and amplifiers.  The self titled cassette, (yes that’s right… cassette tape), by WristLikeThis! is 8 songs, 15 minutes and one of the most intense aural beatings you’ll take ever.

Front and center of this freight train of lunacy is Todd: screaming, yelling, shouting and grumbling.  Most of the vocals are done in a sort of Keith Morris, “spit out as many words as I can before this minute and a half is up”, sort of way but there are bursts of bizarre singing and full on hardcore screams scattered throughout each song.  The variations make things much more interesting but you still have to have pretty thick skin to listen to Todd yell at you for 15 minutes straight.

Matt’s guitar provides the melody for the album.  With far more high end and far less thick distortion than most punk players the guitar becomes cutting and jangly.  This works incredibly well to break up the complete destruction of Todd and the rhythm section.  When he wants to join in with the super fast strumming it also turns into a complete noisy dagger.  “EMT Polka” is a great example of the polar opposite sounds he’s making work throughout the album.

Feeding this beast is one of my favorite rhythm sections ever.  Jay (drums) and Christian (bass) play together in A Honey Wagon as well... and even though WristLikeThis! isn’t even the same ballpark sound wise, they play off each other in very similar ways.   I feel like Jay Curland studies a style of music to death before he joins a band and then adds his own take to it when the songs are written.  This is some of the most solid punk rock drumming I’ve heard in a long time.  It’s fast, yes, but it’s also varied to help the songs along and that’s something punk rockers tend to forget.  Christian is playing much more of a traditional punk rock bass player role but still doing an exceptional job.  His tone and attack is what gives this album all its heaviness.  He plays completely in the pocket and allows Matt and Todd all the room in the world to work.  On “Uh, Dragons”, my personal favorite song on the record, Christian shows off the melodic bass playing he’s known for without sacrificing even the smallest amount of intensity.

Jason Banta (Recur Occurrence) had his work cut out for him recording these maniacs and he was able to capture their madness without ever making them sound caged.  If you’re into off the wall hardcore punk or are a complete masochist then this is your perfect band making your perfect album.  If you’re a sadist then you should sneak this cassette into your grandmother’s car when she’s not looking.

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Contact Jay Curland from Wrist Like This to purchase the cassette tape -
or stream/purchase and download the tracks here:

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